From the author of the highly successful and influential Finding the Boyfriend Within comes an inspirational guide for gay men seeking spiritual fulfillment.
When Brad Gooch began promoting his self-help book Finding the Boyfriend Within, the first of its kind directed toward a gay readership, he was overwhelmed by the response it generated. Thousands of gay men embraced the book's message of looking into themselves to find comfort and purpose in life. So enthusiastic was the response to the book that Gooch began conducting workshops and, in the process, conceived Dating the Greek Gods as both a follow-up and a companion to the earlier book -- a self-help book designed as a sort of "advanced class" for readers of Finding the Boyfriend Within.
Because of the conflicted reaction many gay men have to any discussion of religious spirituality, Gooch hit upon the idea of drawing on an older spiritual base -- that of Ancient Greece -- for examining and explaining his approach to achieving a higher understanding of self through spirituality. The stories of the Greek gods have inspired human consciousness for more than thirty centuries, the outgrowth of a society in which homosexuality was an accepted aspect of human behavior. Dating the Greek Gods explores these stories as well as the dominant characteristics of those Greek deities, tying the spirituality of being a gay male to the inner patterns -- or archetypes -- that shape men's personalities and personal relationships.
Gooch organizes the book into a series of meditations and personal exercises shaped around the characters, stories, and dominant traits of the deities. For example, in chapter one, Apollo addresses wisdom; chapter two concerns Dionysus and deals with sexuality and disco nights; chapter three is about Hermes and concerns communication, and so on, from Hephaestos and Eros (creativity and romance) to Zeus (independence and freedom). Gooch delves into these enduring archetypes to show men how, by understanding the philosophy behind these gods, they can come to better understand themselves and, in the process, enrich their lives.
Unique in its approach and totally accessible in its realization, Dating the Greek Gods is an enlightened and literary self-help book that encourages readers to turn to their own inner oracle -- the inner voice that prompted them to "come out" in the first place -- and in the process to revitalize themselves through viewing the world's spiritual traditions in a more inclusive and caring fashion.
Gooch takes a philosophical, quasi-spiritual approach to dating, applying lessons learned from the Greek gods to his romantic interactions with men. But the goal of this volume, which is part memoir, part mythology lesson and part self-help guide, is not simply to empower readers to find social success. Rather, Gooch (Finding the Boyfriend Within) holds that self-examination and study of Greek wisdom can have an effect on the whole self--and that a better social life is a happy by-product. After an introduction that attempts to explain the relationship between the Greek gods and gay dating, the book launches into seven chapters; six examine the traits and lessons of particular gods--Apollo, Dionysus, Hermes, Hephaestus, Eros and Zeus--and one looks at the wisdom of Socrates. The author describes the gods and their beliefs, and offers a few themed exercises for each. Erotic exercise #4, for example, has readers:"List your current crushes. If you draw a blank, you can include crushes from movies, sports, or TV." Hermenuetic exercise #1 urges readers to"Create a new workout program." Though Gooch sometimes stretches to make connections between the gods and real life, the lessons and exercises can be thought provoking.